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Christina Applegate Says She’s Been Playing a ‘Character Called Christina’ for 40 Years

Christina Applegate Has Been Playing a Character In Public
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Christina Applegate is finally ready to introduce herself.

The actress, 52, has a new podcast with Jamie-Lynn Sigler called “MeSsy,” in which both women get candid about living with multiple sclerosis. For Applegate, it represents a major shift.

“I’ve been playing a character called Christina for 40 years, who I wanted everybody to think I was because it’s easier,” Applegate told Robin Roberts during a Wednesday, March 13, appearance on Good Morning America. “But this is kind of my coming-out party.”

Applegate has been a pop culture fixture since first appearing as Kelly Bundy on Married … With Children when she was only 15 years old. As she explained, however, she’s been playing a role offscreen as well.

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“This is the person I’ve been this whole time,” she said. “I was kind of putting on a little act for everybody for so long.”

Applegate explained she had been focused on being “light” and “funny,” making sure she wasn’t causing anybody in her orbit to “feel uncomfortable.”

As she told Roberts, “I don’t care anymore.”

It was a change that cohost Sigler, 42, noticed immediately.

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“After we recorded our first episode and we listened to it,” she said, “the first thing I did was call her and I was like, ‘I am so excited for people to get to know this Christina.’”

Sigler, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in 2002 when she was just 20 years old, said she’s excited about Applegate finally letting her guard down — and being there with her friend every step of the way.

“I just feel like I have a front row seat for — I know it’s hard and I know it’s hard to see — but a really beautiful chapter for her,” Sigler told Roberts, 63. “I really believe that.”

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Applegate was diagnosed with MS in 2021, but she revealed she likely had an undiagnosed version for “six or seven years,” which coincided with her time on Netflix’s Dead to Me.

“The first season, we’d be shooting and I would buckle,” she explained. “My leg would buckle. I really just put it off as being tired or [being] dehydrated or it’s the weather.”

With the podcast, Applegate is hoping to jump-start a dialogue and a community, so listeners can feel seen and heard, “even if they’re not going through MS.”

The first episode of “MeSsy” drops March 19.

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